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US has taken its rightful place on the world stage

Re “Russia, China holding mirror up to US, and it’s not pretty” (Ideas, Jan. 16): The letter you published in response to Stephen Kinzer’s “China gives us a taste of our own medicine” is full of vitriolic comments, such as that “we provoke China and Russia,” we need to reduce our “imperialism and hegemony abroad,” and “many nations around the world hate us.”

In fact, the United States was hesitant to get involved in the two world wars (in which my father and grandfathers were US soldiers), and entered those conflicts only after they had been raging for a few years. After largely withdrawing from the world stage after the First World War, the United States did not make the same mistake twice, and stayed engaged in Europe and Asia after the Second World War, arguably preventing a World War III.


The Eastern European countries eagerly joined NATO because they had been brutalized by Russia and were afraid of that country. Now it appears Vladimir Putin, who spends the country’s limited wealth on himself, the oligarchs, nuclear weapons, and military buildup, may want to cause the death of thousands of impoverished young troops from Russia and Ukraine for no reason other than to feed his ego.

The Beijing government, meanwhile, runs a surveillance state; brutalizes Hong Kong, Tibet, and the Xinjiang Uyghurs; and threatens democratic Taiwan with invasion.

The Globe has the temerity to preach moral equivalency by publishing a headline such as “Russia, China holding mirror up to US, and it’s not pretty.” It seems your mirror is broken; I’ll gladly send you a new one.

Bill Hahn